Te Kete Ipurangi Navigation:

Te Kete Ipurangi

Te Kete Ipurangi user options:

Senior Secondary navigation


Level 6 legal studies


Indicators are adjuncts to the objectives – their purpose is to provide greater clarity in terms of expected depth and scope by providing examples of the kinds of behaviours and capabilities that a teacher might expect to observe in a student who is achieving at the appropriate level. Teachers can add further indicators if they wish.

Students can use the indicators as a guide when assessing their own progress; teachers can use them as a guide when reporting to parents, whānau, or the next teacher.

Context elaborations

Context elaborations are possible contexts for learning, with an indication of how they might be used with the focus learning objective.

The listed context elaborations are examples only. Teachers can select and use entirely different contexts in response to local situation, community relevance, and students’ interests and needs.

Assessment for qualifications

The legal studies unit standards will be reviewed in the next cycle. When the standards for this subject have been finalised, this guide will link them to the relevant learning objectives.

For information about the standards and access to the present legal studies unit standards go to the NZQA website. At present only level 2 and 3 legal studies unit standards available.

Learning objective 6.1: Legal concepts and principles

Students will gain knowledge, skills, and experience to:

  • identify and describe legal concepts and principles.


  • Identifies and describes concepts of law.
  • Identifies and describes concepts of democracy and government.
  • Identifies and describes concepts of justice.

Possible context elaborations

  • Laws, customs, and rules: Māori customary law compared with 'western' style law.
  • The need for law: resolving conflict, regulating social relationships, maintaining order, promoting equity, protecting people and property – the why and how in New Zealand.
  • Characteristics of liberal democracy: New Zealand, as exemplified in the election process, civil liberties, an unrestrained media, constraints on executive power, rule of law, freedom for minorities, etc.
  • Other forms of government: a democracy compared with a theocracy, such as Iran, or a dictatorship, such as Nazi Germany.
  • Characteristics of justice: the statue of Justice – the significance of the scales, the sword, the blindfold, the robes, the gender.
  • The origins of justice: Emperor Justinian’s code.

Learning objective 6.2: Legal systems and processes

Students will gain knowledge, skills, and experience to:

  • identify and describe legal systems and process.


  • Identifies and describes systems of government and their formation.
  • Identifies and describes law making processes.
  • Identifies and describes litigation and dispute resolution processes.

Possible context elaborations

  • Proportional representation in New Zealand.
  • Westminster style government in New Zealand
  • The legislative process: the time period from pre-introduction to the Royal Assent.
  • The role of delegated legislation: regulations, orders-in-council, by-laws.
  • The function of specialist courts, for example, the Coroner’s Court, Youth Court, Family Court, Environment Court, Employment Court, Maori Land Court.
  • The function of specialist tribunals: the Waitangi Tribunal, Tenancy Tribunal, Motor Vehicle Disputes Tribunal, Human Rights Review Tribunal.

< Back to learning objectives main page

Last updated August 9, 2013